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Sunday, September 4, 2016

Time to Think Differently!

Change the Way You Think About People; Improve Your Writing

Writing is not a science. Although writers may maintain logical processes to spit words onto paper, we also understand that crafting a story requires a certain level of emotional aptitude. Yet, many times, I have read characters within a story who change their traits, motivations, etc., clearly based on the vicissitudes of the writer's mood.

Let's speak plainly. Fictional characters should be described in ways which are meaningful and consistent. Drastic changes in their behavior should be a result of an event, or events, which weigh on the character's mind over time. The character should not be so general that they could be anyone, but also not SO extreme that they appear FICTIONAL.

Some of the most successful writers I know wrote the full of their stories in short spurts: a week, two weeks, or a month. Yet many authors will spend months to years in piecing together their first manuscript. The truth of it is, our emotions evolve over time toward others, including the characters within our stories. Just like we are mired by our relationships with real people in our life, we also struggle to see fictional characters as fully-fleshed out individuals.

This comes down to how we think about people. I would recommend that you practice creating fictional characters by trying to describe them wholly, including the secrets you may never share in the book you are writing. Make LOTS of characters, and for those you don't readily put in a book, go back in a couple months and see if you feel any differently about them.

Joshua Robertson, CEO
Crimson Edge Press, LLC

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